Phalangeal Fractures in the Athlete

  • James Logan
  • David Warwick
Part of the In Clinical Practice book series (ICP)


Phalangeal fractures are the most frequently encountered fractures in athletes. The vast majority of phalangeal fractures are intrinsically stable and require little more than a brief period of rest, elevation and splinting. Adjusted conditioning exercises can frequently be continued with minimal discomfort.

This chapter aims to cover the clinical assessment of the suspected finger fracture and required investigations. The principles of safe splintage will be discussed as will the importance of rehabilitation and decision-making with regard to return to play. Surgical strategies for the treatment of these fractures will be described in order to help appreciate what surgery can offer but also the shortcomings. Some understanding of the surgical procedures improves communication between surgeon and sports physician and will help to design appropriate rehabilitation programmes. We dispel the myth that surgical fixation with plate and screws will automatically mean a quicker recovery and return to play.


Phalanx Extra-articular Deformity Stability Early mobilisation Nonoperative Splinting Surgery Stiffness Complications 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • James Logan
    • 1
  • David Warwick
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of OrthopaedicsUniversity Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation TrustSouthamptonUK

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